Wyoming Adds 9,500 Jobs Since December 2006
Wyoming job growth continued at a healthy pace in December as 9,500 jobs were added compared to a year earlier (3.4%). In contrast, U.S. job growth decelerated to 0.9%, its slowest rate since March 2004. Wyoming’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate increased from 2.9% in November to 3.1% in December but remained much lower than the U.S. unemployment rate (5.0% in December).
From November to December, Wyoming lost 100 jobs. This level of decrease is consistent with normal seasonal patterns for the state. Seasonal job losses in construction (-1,800 jobs, or -6.5%) were almost offset by seasonal job gains in retail trade (300 jobs, or 0.9%), leisure & hospitality (900 jobs, or 3.0%), and government (300 jobs, or 0.4%).
Over the year Wyoming added 9,500 jobs (3.4%). As in previous months, the largest job gains were found in the construction sector (2,700 jobs, or 11.6%). Strong growth also occurred in wholesale trade (900 jobs, or 10.7%), transportation, warehousing, & utilities (800 jobs, or 5.7%), professional & business services (1,100 jobs, or 6.5%), and other services (800 jobs, or 7.4%). More modest growth was seen in manufacturing (300 jobs, or 2.9%), financial activities (100 jobs, or 0.9%), and government (900 jobs, or 1.3%). Employment fell slightly in natural resources & mining (-500 jobs, or -1.8%) and information (-200 jobs, or -4.7%).
Almost all county unemployment rates followed their normal seasonal pattern and increased slightly from November to December. Big Horn and Niobrara counties had the highest unemployment rates (both 5.2%), followed by Platte County (5.0%). Unemployment was below 3% in seven counties (Sublette 1.6%, Campbell 2.1%, Albany 2.4%, Sweetwater 2.5%, Teton 2.5%, Natrona 2.9%, and Lincoln 2.9%).